Gentleman, Scholar, and all around great guy Spencer Morse (Riding While Writing) just recently rocked the folding bike world at the Brompton U.S. Championships. He not only took first in the folding competition, which in my opinion is the most important, he also took first in best dress, and third in the pedal course. The best part about all of this is that Spencer hails from right here in Utah Valley! BikeProvo gave the champ a call in Minneapolis to get the full scoop.
BikeProvo: So why Bromptons?
Spencer: Back in 2008 when I first started working for MadDog Cycles I was introduced to folding bikes. At that time I had never heard about Bromptons or the awesome events that surround them, we were just looking at folding bikes in general. One of the managers had a Brompton postcard that showed one of their events. There were folding bikes, tweed suits, and knickers. I knew that this was a bike culture that I wanted to be part of. A few years later I was getting ready to move onto a Master’s program, and needed an appropriate bike. In came my Brompton. It is the perfect bike for getting to and from campus. It has built in lights and cargo capabilities, it folds down small, and nobody has one!
The other awesome thing about Brompton is the type of person it attracts. For example, the gal who won the women’s race first got into Bromptons when she was touring Europe. She was visiting holocaust sites which normally require you to either rent a car or pay for a cab. Instead of paying each time she invested in a Brompton. A lot of riders have similar awesome stories.
BP: All of your accomplishments were impressive, but how fast did you fold. I have worked with Bromptons, and while the fold is easy, it is not easy to do when you are racing a clock.
S: I am not sure my exact time, but there is a video (below) which is about 18 seconds, and I did my fold in half that. So it was a sub 10 second fold for sure.
We here at BikeProvo timed the fold with our precision Swiss watches, and clocked Spencer’s fold, with the pop out, at 7.4 seconds. That is just .21 seconds slower than the winner of last years Brompton World Championship. That means with out the pop out Spencer could be the fastest Brompton folder in the world!
BP: Congratulations on all the wins. Is there anything else you would like to add?
S: Yes. A big thanks to Calhoun Cycles. They took this event on as a last minute thing, and really did a great job with it. Also, this event was made possible by not only awesome bike nerds, but also by an awesome community bike shop, an awesome Mayor, and awesome businesses. The race was just a kick off for the second annual Minneapolis Open Streets, and both events were a success because of all of the support.
Thanks so much Spencer for answering a few questions, and for representing us so well as the dapper chap you are. I should note that after Spencer collected his winnings he once again mounted his steed and rode 1.5 miles to his church service which was happening. If that is not love for the bike I am not sure what is.